UC San Diego installs coronavirus test kit vending machines

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UC San Diego shared this image of a vending machine that dispenses coronavirus test kits.

UC San Diego shared this image of a vending machine that dispenses coronavirus test kits.

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Students and staff at UC San Diego can now get coronavirus test kits from vending machines on campus.

The university announced in early December that 20 vending machines containing COVID-19 test kits were coming to campus as part of its “Return to Learn” program, KTLA sister station KSWB reports.

When students and staff return for winter quarter Jan. 4, they’ll be expected to conduct daily symptom and exposure screenings and participate in no-cost weekly testing. UCSD ramped up symptomatic and asymptomatic testing efforts with the goal of quickly identifying and containing any outbreaks.

UCSD shared the locations of 11 of the COVID-19 test kit vending machines Saturday.

Students and employees are required to return samples within 72 hours.

Kits from vending machines can be returned to drop boxes next to the vending machines. Students can pick up and drop off test kits between 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. seven days a week.

The university said in December that it also planned to expand detection of the virus by increasing wastewater monitoring. The campus first started monitoring wastewater outflow last summer with six wastewater samplers.

They test wastewater for traces of the coronavirus. If it’s detected, the university notifies students and staff in buildings linked to the manhole where the sample was gathered. The university encourages people to get tested and anyone who is infected moves into isolation housing. The program will eventually cover 200 sample locations across campus.

More information on UCSD’s self-administered testing can be found on the university’s website.

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